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October 4, 2013
CONTACT: K.E. Schwab

SRU offers high school Writer's Workshop

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. – More than 70 high school junior and senior budding writers, possibly the next J. K. Rowling, Michael Crichton or Stephen King, will visit Slippery Rock University Oct. 11 for a "Writer's Workshop."

The SRU English department and the Office of Admissions are sponsoring the program that opens at 8:30 a.m. in the Smith Student Center.

"This is a chance for high school students in the region to see what benefits they can receive from a college education that can help their writing abilities. It is a chance to get a taste of college writing instruction and to show the kind of involvement students find in college writing classes," said Neil Cosgrove, chair of the SRU English department.

"We have put together a program that will show the students where their writing is strong, and offer suggestions on where they can begin work to improve. In reality, it's all about the writing," he said, "but, overall, it will be fun and informative and give the participants and their parents the chance to visit our campus."

Participants will have their choice of four workshops:

"Get Out: Prose and Poetry Performance," where the student's words will be brought to life in a engaging session involving SRU musicians and dancers;

"Zombie Writing: Reanimating Dead Texts," a workshop examining out-of-date books that could be transformed into cutting-edge art or text poems. Participants will leave with a completed project;

"The Five Fingers of Death: Redefining the Five-Paragraph Essay," a look how being taught to construct the perfect five-paragraph essay may have been wrong; and,

"Chalk the Walk: Parodies and Poettweets," with participants using 140 characters and chalk to create a new realm of self-expression.

Parents joining their student for the program will have the chance to meet with admissions, financial aid and career development counselors to learn more about college before enjoying lunch in Weisenfluh Dining Hall.

"The Admissions Office is excited to partner with the English department faculty in this project. It has been a great learning experience for all of us and we're excited and ready for next week's program," said Mimi Campbell, associate director of undergraduate admissions.

English department faculty planning the event included: Nancy Barta-Smith, Nanette DiMarco, Cindy LaCom and Rachela Permenter, professors; Frederick White and Mark O'Connor, associate professors; Jason Stuart and Timothy Oldakowski, assistant professors; and Rebecca May, instructor.

Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.